A Guide to Fix WordPress Common Errors

Error 404, 500, 502, 503… Finding your way around WordPress errors that occur on your site can easily become a real Chinese puzzle.

In order to avoid these headaches, we have compiled for you the list of the 5 most frequent WordPress errors so that you can easily identify, prevent, and correct them on your website.

Why is it important to fix WordPress errors?

WordPress errors on your site can harm:

  • your SEO
  • your user experience
  • your ability to get backlinks

Your natural referencing

WordPress errors signal to Google that your site is of lower quality and that the user experience you have to offer does not meet the expectations of Internet users. Thus, Google will tend to penalize a site that contains a lot of errors that will affect its SEO. The objective for Google: only to bring back high-performance, relevant and pleasant sites for its users. Logical, right?

Your user experience and reputation on the web

In addition to the negative impact that WordPress errors can have on your SEO, they also hinder the experience of your users and at the same time harm your e-reputation.

Nowadays, smooth navigation is essential to inspire confidence in your visitors and encourage them to return to your site.

A site full of errors is also less likely to get backlinks since it seems to be of lower quality. If link acquisition is part of your web marketing strategy, it is especially important to make sure that your site makes a good impression.

Don’t jeopardize your chances of appearing on the first page of results and gaining the loyalty of your visitors! In the next section, learn how to identify and fix the most common WordPress errors so that they never harm your SEO again.

Frequent WordPress errors and how to prevent them

Prevention is better than cure! Here are the 5 most common WordPress errors and our tips for preventing them on your website:

  • WordPress 404 Error
  • Exploration error
  • Error 500 WordPress
  • Error 502 “Bad Gateway”
  • WordPress error 503

1. WordPress 404 error

What is a 404 WordPress error?

A 404 WordPress error is generally linked to the internal and external mesh of your site. It comes in several forms, the most common of which is Error 404 “Not Found”. A WordPress 404 error occurs when you use dead links, i.e. links referring your visitors to a page that no longer exists.

example 404 wordpress error

How to prevent a 404 WordPress error?

To prevent a 404 WordPress error from occurring, check your page URLs frequently. Make sure all of your links are working and remove or replace the ones that no longer work. Here are two useful free tools for finding dead links on your site:

  • Broken Link Checker: This is a WordPress plug-in that identifies dead links on your site for you so that you can correct them or simply delete them to prevent the 404 WordPress error.
  • Check My link: if you prefer to work with a Chrome extension, this tool is a very good alternative that you can use on any site to identify dead links and not just your own.

avoid 404 wordpress error

In this example, Check My Link found a dead link on this Wikipedia page, which it identified in red.

2. Indexing or crawling errors

What is an indexing error?

Indexing errors (“crawl errors” in English) are WordPress errors that occur when Google robots are unable to crawl and index your site. They can occur on a single page of your site or on its entirety.

WordPress errors related to indexing by Google robots can be catastrophic for your SEO since they prevent your site from appearing on the results pages.

We talk in more detail about indexing errors as well as several other natural referencing errors in our article ” how to improve your SEO “.

How to prevent exploration errors?

To help prevent WordPress errors from occurring when Google indexes your site, periodically check the Search Console Error Reporting report. It is the free tool from Google allowing you to manage the indexing of your website. You can, for example, submit your sitemap to it so that Google can more easily determine the structure of your site and navigate it more smoothly.

But it doesn’t end there! The Search Console also provides you with a crawl error report that makes it easier for you to identify and resolve problems that arose while indexing your site.

3. Error 500 WordPress

What is a 500 WordPress error?

The WordPress 500 error is a very common general error. It indicates a problem with your server, without specifying the origin or the cause of the error.

example 500 wordpress error

How to prevent a 500 WordPress error

The 500 WordPress error is often caused, among other things, by plug-ins on your theme slowing down or preventing access to your server. When installed on your site, WordPress plug-ins insert new lines of code into your source code. During this process, errors can sneak in, causing the 500 WordPress error.

We recommend that you be selective when you install new plug-ins on your site and remove them when they are inactive if you want to prevent the 500 WordPress error.

4. Error “502 Bad Gateway”

What is a 502 error?

The WordPress 502 “Bad Gateway” error occurs when your server is down or overloaded. In some cases, it is also possible that such an error occurs when the user connection is faulty, thus preventing him from connecting to your server. A quick refresh of the page affected by the problem is generally enough to remedy it.

How to prevent a 502 “Bad Gateway?” Error

Since error 502 is caused by a server problem, it is likely that your site has nothing to do with its appearance: the platform hosting your site (WordPress or other) takes care of it.

5. Error 503 WordPress

What is a 503 WordPress error?

Similar to error 502, WordPress error 503 or “503: Gateway Timeout” is related to a server problem. More specifically, this is a WordPress error that appears when the user delays receiving a response from your server.

example 503 wordpress error

How to prevent a 503 WordPress error

The 503 WordPress error, like the 500 error, is also generally avoidable if you are careful when installing new plug-ins on your site.

BONUS: Prevent several other WordPress errors by checking your HTML code frequently

One guaranteed way to have a site saturated with WordPress errors is to publish your changes without first validating the code. Fortunately, it is very easy to prevent such a situation thanks to the plethora of free HTML code verification resources available on the web.

you just have to paste your code in it to identify the errors that have crept in.

identify wordpress errors

What to do when your site already contains WordPress errors?

You now know some good practices to prevent WordPress errors… But what if your site already contains them?

Although it is important, the correction of your site requires a high level of technical knowledge, expertise, and thoroughness. If your users frequently encounter the 500 WordPress error, the 503 WordPress error or any other error detrimental to their experience, we recommend that you perform an SEO audit of your website.

Trust the experts

To do this, it is generally best to work with a WordPress expert or an agency like Digitad to ensure the quality and completeness of the audit and the corrections made. You can consult our article ” how to choose the right SEO agency ” to guide you in your choice.

By delegating the management and technical optimization of your site to experts, you will be able to invest your time and energy in the management of other activities and operations of your business and sleep on both ears.

If you are interested in such a service, we invite you to contact Digitad for a free evaluation. We recognize the importance of having a fluid and error-free site for your SEO as well as for your customer experience and we will be happy to assist you in your task.

In the meantime, you can consult our article ” how to do an SEO audit in 10 steps ” where we briefly explain the process.

Ready to beat WordPress errors?

Although this is a rather technical and complex subject, the correction of your WordPress errors will allow you to boost your credibility, your traffic, and your conversions exponentially.

To go even further in creating the ultimate website, check out our article on SEO for mobile site optimization. You can also maximize the speed of your site with our image optimization guide.

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